Protective Effect of Vitamin C Against Monosodium Glutamate (MSG) Induced Apoptosis in Ovaries of Adult Female Rats

Document Type : Original Article


1 Department of Forensic Medicine and Clinical Toxicology , Faculty of Medicine- Tanta University, Egypt

2 Department of Forensic Medicine and Clinical Toxicology, Faculty of Medicine, Tanta University, Egypt

3 Department of Pathology, Faculty of Medicine, Tanta University, Egypt


The reproductive system is very sensitive to different harmful environmental factors. A great danger is hidden in an increased use of different food additives like monosodium glutamate (MSG). Earlier studies have shown that higher doses of MSG induce oxidative damage which can result in apoptosis. Accordingly, this work was carried out to study the possible protective effect of vitamin C on monosodium glutamate induced ovarian toxicity in adult female albino rats. Sixty adult female albino rats were included in this study which were divided into four main groups. Group I served as control group (10 rats). Group II (10 rats) received 100mg/kg/day vitamin C. Group III (20 rats) was further subdivided as follows subgroup I (10 rats) that was treated with 100mg/kg/day MSG and subgroup II (10 rats) which was treated with 4gm/kg/day MSG. Group IV (20 rats) was further subdivided into two subgroups and received both MSG and vitamin C in their previous doses. All animals were treated orally by gastric tube for two months. Body weights for all studied groups were measured. Histopathological examination using H&E stain and caspase-3 immunostaining was carried out. The present work revealed that there was a significant increase in the body weight of MSG-treated animals (group III) compared to the other groups (I,II,IV).  This increase was dose dependent and was more significant in 4gm/kg than in 100mg/kg MSGtreated animals.  H&E stained sections revealed many atretic follicles and corpora lutea with few primary and secondary follicles in 100mg/kg MSG- treated group, while many atretic follicles and corpora lutea only without any developmental stages of the follicles were observed in 4gm/kg MSG- treated group. There was also marked increase in caspase-3 expression in 4gm/kg MSG treated group compared to other groups. Moreover, there was significant improvement in all studied parameters on administration of vitamin C concomitant with MSG which was more observed with low MSG dose (100mg/kg). The present work has demonstrated that oral administration of monosodium glutamate resulted in increased body weight of adult female rats and overt pathological lesions in their ovaries. These effects were dose dependent. Oral administration of vitamin C along with MSG provided a significant improvement in the pathological changes in ovaries of rats administrated MSG at low dose (100mg/kg) in comparison with high dose (4gm/kg) MSG treated group. Thus, vitamin C holds a promise as an agent that can potentially reduce MSG induced toxic effects in ovaries.